Evolve launched in February to fanfare, shouting, and monster generated fire. The game sells as a asymmetrical co-op multiplayer (and single player with bots) collection of maps with various modes, playing as either a group of hippie, gun-toting psycho whack jobs hunting monsters on a planet or as an overly smart carnivorous monster hunting the gun-toting hippies. Players were introduced into the Evolve world as part of an open-beta, and the release of the game itself is very similar to the beta version.
Evolve takes place on the planet Shear. Mankind has expanded into the furthest reaches of the galaxy and established colonies on planets like Shear. Malevolent monsters have attempted to eradicate the colonies on Shear. A man named William Cabot is brought out of retirement to fight the monsters. We are introduced to the story as part of the opening cinematic, but that is about the end of any attempt to incorporate any semblance of a story. There are some cut scenes that begin each map that attempt to add more to the paltry story, but aside from some Michael Bay-esque violence, there isn’t much to what aspires to be a story.
There are some cut scenes that begin each map that attempt to add more to the paltry story, but aside from some Michael Bay-esque violence, there isn’t much to what aspires to be a story.
You either fight as part of a four-person team, consisting of Assault, Trapper, Medic, and Support classes against a single monster, either Goliath, Kraken, Wraith, or Behemoth classes, or vice versa as a single monster against the four-person team. There are four map modes that you get to play in: Hunt, Nest, Defend, and Rescue. In Hunt, the monster must destroy a power relay; in Nest, six sets of monster eggs must be defended by the monster or destroyed by the humans; in Defend a refueling station must either be defended or two generators destroyed by the monster; and in Rescue, injured colonists must be rescued across the map.
You either fight as part of a four-person team, consisting of Assault, Trapper, Medic, and Support classes against a single monster, either Goliath, Kraken, Wraith, or Behemoth classes, or vice versa as a single monster against the four-person team.
While the gameplay is solid and the various weapons and skills used by the humans and monsters are somewhat varied, the environments and variety with the rest of the game is sorely lacking. In the four different maps, interaction with the environment almost seems to be an after-thought. In the Hunt maps, you fight the monster at stages I, II, and III (increasing stages means getting stronger, which requires eating smaller monsters), although the monster frequently tries to get away, requiring a fairly boring chase. Rescuing injured colonists involves moving across the map to find them stupidly sitting amongst fauna and dangerous animals. You don’t even really rescue the colonists, just get near them. Once you ‘rescue’ the colonists, they then help you fight the monster. They are defenseless until you rescue them, then morph into some sort of fighting machine. Very bizarre. The Nest map doesn’t so much involve killing the monster as it involves destroying the eggs. If you destroy the eggs, you win. Apparently the monster is, at that point, OK with the murder of its children. Defend is probably the most varied map as there are different missions depending on whether you are playing as a monster or a human. The game, while fun, is fairly basic in terms of variety, interaction, and expansion capabilities. At least the gameplay is solid.
Evolve deserves a 7 out of 10. While the gameplay is enjoyable and fun, it is fairly basic and lacks a solid story (or any story), spark and variety. Given expansion and DLC possibilities, Evolve could turn out to be a much better game.